One of the widely known beginnings of the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog can be traced back to the first century B.C. when they were first brought to Switzerland by the Romans. Others say though that the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog was first brought long before by the Phoenician traders.
One thing is for certain. This breed of dog is a product of mating foreign large mastiff-type dogs brought to Switzerland with their indigenous dogs. Traditionally known to be herding dogs, Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs today are great as guard dogs. Although they are very strong, energetic and tend to bark excessively, they are very gentle in nature and respectful of the family they live with.
Characteristics of a Greater Swiss Mountain Dog
As your puppy grows up, they’ll further develop the features of a true Greater Swiss Mountain Dog. Females will reach a height of about 23.5 to 27 inches and weigh around 85 to 115 pounds. Males, on the other hand, will reach a height of about 25.5 to 28.5 inches and weigh around 110 to 140 pounds. Their fur is double-coated and tri-colored of black, rust and white. The top coat is shiny, dense and short while the bottom coat is very thick.
Caring for the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog
With this type of coat, your dog requires weekly brushing to maintain its healthy coat. Their toenails need attention as well. It should be clipped regularly with a highly recommended guillotine-type trimmer. As for dental care, their teeth must be brushed with a specialized toothbrush and toothpaste at least twice a week. This way, you can prevent dog periodontal diseases that may lead to bad breath, pain, loss of teeth, and other serious ailments.
The early years of your Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs are very crucial. All dogs are definitely different, but they all need the same amount of affection, care and training to enjoy a happy and healthy pet life. If you ever note the initial onset of signs and symptoms of any disease, contact your veterinarian immediately.
During their first year, it is a must that you bring your dogs to your veterinarian frequently for shots, boosters and routine checkups. As they grow up into adults, a yearly visit for shots and checkup would do.
In feeding your Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, remember to feed it more than once a day. Like humans, never let them exercise or let them engage in any strenuous activity right after meals. Do avoid feeding them sweets especially chocolates.
Some common diseases to be cautious of in this kind of dog breed are bone diseases, epilepsy, bloating, eye problems, Canine Hip Dysplasia, and Volvulus. If your dog is fortunate enough to be born without any disease, there is no reason for you to sit back and relax.
With proper guidance and responsible pet ownership, you’ll be able to fully develop your dogs’ potentials and capabilities. Most importantly, you’ll be able to spend about 10 to 12 happy years with your Greater Swiss Mountain dog.